Note: this is the second in a series of photography-focused posts created by American photographer Jake Homovich. See the first here.
On a recent trip I took to Aba prefecture, western Sichuan, I was afforded the chance to delve into scenes that I thought I would only ever encounter in my imagination. Breath-taking neon blue mountain skylines, ancient Chinese ruins spread along the mountainside covered in wildflowers, herds of wild horses nosing curiously though the heather, and wonderful people.
We were on a hunt for fermentation. Jordan from Chengdu Food Tours and I were taking Adam James, a fermentation and pickling specialist from Tasmania, on a series of trips and activities across western Sichuan to help him gain deeper insight into fermentation processes native to Sichuan. This included learning from the locals about how to make duo ban, pao cai, and bai jiu and also about raw materials are used for each of these processes.
We drove out to the Qiang area of Aba county, just west of Wenchuan, to try out local dishes and to paint a bigger picture of how the diversity and freshness of their local produce affects their cuisine. Along the way we found that each town incorporated local ingredients in their own individual ways, which created a distinct taste palate unique to each location.
As we travelled further and further, we reached more and more fascinating places and people; places with a history and story to tell. I hope these images can do them justice.